29.06.15 - Can Finance cure cancer? New Approaches to Funding Biomedical Innovation



Funding for biomedical innovation has been declining at the same time that breakthroughs in translational medicine seem to be occurring at ever increasing rates. One explanation for this counterintuitive state of affairs is that greater scientific knowledge in biomedicine can actually lead to greater economic risk for biopharma investors. While the impact of the Human Genome project, high-throughput screening, and genetic biomarkers has been tremendously positive for clinicians and their patients, it has also increased the cost and complexity of the drug development process, causing investors to shift their assets to more attractive investment opportunities.

Invited by the Geneva Finance Research Institute at the University of Geneva and Geneva Financial Center, professor Andrew W. Lo will give a public lecture on Monday, 29 June.

In this talk, he will review this novel interpretation of recent trends in the biopharma industry and describe how financial engineering-portfolio theory, securitization, credit default swaps, and other tools of modern finance-can be used to reduce the risk and increase the attractiveness of biomedical innovation so as to bridge the "Valley of Death" in translational medicine.

He is the Charles E. and Susan T. Harris Professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, the director of MIT’s Laboratory for Financial Engineering, and a principal investigator at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab. He received a B.A. in economics from Yale University in 1980, and an A.M. and Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University in 1984.

He has published extensively in academic journals (see http://web.mit.edu/alo/www/) and his most recent book is Hedge Funds: An Analytic Perspective. His awards include Sloan and Guggenheim Fellowships, the Paul A. Samuelson Award, the Harry M. Markowitz Award, the CFA Institute’s James R. Vertin Award, and election to Academia Sinica, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Econometric Society, and Time Magazine’s 2012 list of the “100 most influential people in the world.” He has also received teaching awards from the University of Pennsylvania and MIT.

His most recent research focuses on systemic risk, evolutionary models of investor behavior, and applying financial engineering to accelerate biomedical innovation.


Can Finance cure cancer?
Public lecture given by Andrew W. Lo
Professor at MIT Sloan School of Management and Director of MIT’s Laboratory for Financial Engineering

Monday, 29 June 2015 at 18:30
Collège Calvin, room Franck-Martin

15 juin 2015